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tv   Americas Lawyer with Mike Papantonio  RT  October 4, 2017 10:01pm-10:30pm EDT

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to do anything when he was alerted to the problem later in the show a brazilian organization says members of an amazon tribe were ruthlessly murdered by gold miners leading to an official investigation so don't go anywhere america's lawyers start right now. on. the abuse of the elderly in nursing homes is one of the most overlooked stories in the united states each day our family members face might marriage conditions under unskilled caregivers attention abuse can come in many forms the most obvious this is physical abuse but other forms like verbal and emotional abuse and neglect are the ones that so often go unreported and there just a serious and they're dangerous this is physical abuse that can cost people their lives according to statistics compiled by the nursing abuse guide the problem might
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even be worse than the few reports on that issue have stated here's what they found between one thousand nine hundred ninety nine and two thousand when almost one third of all nursing home facilities were cited for violations of federal standards that could cause harm or did harm elderly residents of those facilities nearly ten percent of nursing homes of violations that pose the risk of serious injury or death of elderly residents more than forty percent of nursing home residents have reported abuse and more than a ninety percent report that they or another resident at a facility have been the gleg or abused research from two thousand and ten indicates that up to half of all nursing home attendants have admitted abusing or neglecting elderly patients in the aftermath of hurricane irma in the state of florida we saw another form of abuse take place even though massive evacuations have been ordered for most of the state an elder care facility called the rehabilitation center at. hollywood hills decided to ignore the evacuation orders
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and kept more than one hundred elderly residents at the facility even though one of the largest and most secure hospitals in the state was right across the street in the days after the storm the facility was left with no electricity no running water leaving residents to become dehydrated and overheated as a result eleven elderly residents died a massive investigation is underway to determine what have been in why the facility didn't evacuate the residents and even the governor has stepped in to demand answers but unfortunately for florida governor rick scott the story is now developing is one that shows he and his administration had completely ignored the calls for help coming from residents at that nursing home. for more on this story let's go to dance all the way dan tell us what what we know
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so far about these nursing home deaths following hurricane arma how did these people die. well mike the people died because they essentially cooked to death the transformer was knocked out from the hurricane so there was no power power in the air conditioning and because there was no generator excessive heat excessive temperatures subjected the residents of the nursing home to outrageous conditions they started dying and because no calls were made no nine one one calls were made essentially they were found dead in their beds by the time an accounting was made eight people were dead within the first day of the power being knocked out so because they didn't have generators to generate the substitute power the extreme temperatures couldn't be abated they died there's a massive investigation happening right now with law enforcement officers or is there any information out there yet on what they found there is far as how bad this
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really was what a collection of idiotic moves by this nursing home brought is all about what do you know bout it. well they determined that some calls were made by the nursing home but they were made to nine one one they were made to statewide help lines even the governor's cell phone was accessed because the governor was on t.v. all the time giving that number out but they did nothing to call an emergency situation to the attention of the first responders nothing really happened until a nurse at the hospital across the street started noticing people coming into the emergency room with these extreme temperatures and i mean body temperatures over one hundred and eight and these people were either dead or they're dying she went across the street looked in the nursing home and what the investigation is showing is that she's the one who called the emergency because she actually found people dead in their bed or suffering such horrific conditions that they were very close to death so this investigation is going to reveal
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a whole lot more but what they're finding is that the nursing home basically ignored an emergency situation making non-emergent calls it best you know florida governor rick scott said recently i think is quote sums to the fact that more we learn about this the more concerning the tragedy is he's pretty on spot on this analysis but i think what's so interesting about this is we've learned that his office actually deleted voice mails from the victims that could have shed some light on what failed in this response tell us about what you know there. well what i know is that the governor and nationally said nobody called nobody made any calls whatsoever to the helpline and then the nursing home was able to prove through documentation that they had made phone calls to both the state helpline and the governor's cell phone well then the governor came back and admitted ok they made phone calls but these weren't the type of calls that you would expect like an emergency was going on there were serious medical needs to be attended to and the
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hospital in responding said that is not true they were exactly emergency calls not just from us but from people associated with us and then the next thing we know the governor says he deleted those phone calls so we'll never know which one is the lying side is that the nursing home that said these were emergent calls or is it the government and the governor who said they were non-emergent just to our power is out then i know you've handled some of the biggest nursing home cases in the state what's interesting thing in my mind is what's next for the victims the families of the victims because in florida our legislators just gutted the ability of an individual to recover for these types types of deaths they they made it to where a nursing home doesn't even have to carry insurance if they carry insurance they have all kinds of immunity before you can even get paid on that insurance this is a story that probably that probably needs to revisit who the legislators were who the lobbyist were that have made it so difficult for people to
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recover in the nursing home case in florida what's your take on that legal aspect of the story. well that may well be the second tragedy that these families have very little if any access to the courts they have arbitration clauses that are put into the nursing home contract that essentially waives their right to go to court to have a jury trial so that they can have a fair and reasonable assessment of their damages in addition you have the availability of punitive damages to punish the wrongdoing nursing home and to send a message to other nursing homes to not engage in this misconduct all that would be waved through the contract in these arbitration clauses where instead of a public proceeding it's a secret proceeding instead of all the reasonable measures available to both compensate and punish very little of that is available i mean what happened here is the industry stepped in and they got rid of the watchdog and they deluded or destroyed all the regulations that protected the nursing home residents were left
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with a system that treats our seniors like dogs well this story is tragic there's no question about that but doesn't this of the appear to be part of the larger issue of systemic abuse of the elderly in nursing homes that we're not just saying just in florida i mean you've got some of the best litigators in this country like yourself that have tried to take on so many of these nursing homes not not just in florida but there are roadblocks everywhere there are the legislators have made road blocks everywhere because money has been poured in to get these legislators to do that you've got so much lobby and influence so much political influence that these nursing home have that right now if you're putting a loved one in a nursing home buddy most of the time it is your own risk what it what's your take on on that or is it is that an overstatement on how serious the problem has become with elder abuse in these nursing homes. it's not an overstatement in the least i think it's a dead on correct statement it's
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a systemic problem in the one nine hundred eighty s. when nursing home residents were were protected a great deal by the ombudsman well the industry poured all this money into the system the legislators and the governor came in the governor immediately removed the watchdog and put in a lightweight so we've got a fox guarding the hen house when it comes to our world war two veterans in our seniors in nursing homes who are subjected to regulations that don't have their safety at heart don't allow for adequate compensation have these arbitration clauses as i mentioned you've got a system where even president obama he he bade these arbitration laws or these arbitration clauses illegal and soon as president from came in he removed that regulation and now we're spending our money through medicare and medicaid and it's a line in the pockets of the nursing home industry to the detriment of the nursing home residents it's a systemic problem dan what what kind of issues do families need to be aware of
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when they consider sending a loved one to a nursing home if you're if you're going down a checklist and i again i can't i don't want to overstate this you really are considered one of the best litigators in the state you've been confronted with this many times we have to sit down with families and you have to say well here's what went wrong you didn't look at a b. and c. so out front what do you tell a family to look for when they put some money in nursing home. well mike i i don't just litigate these cases but i am this person i have my own family and my in-laws who i'm looking at nursing homes at right now and i have a mental checklist i mean the first question i have is a my stuck putting them in a nursing home in florida because i don't want them to be subjected to these arbitration clauses we don't have the long term care insurance available to me so we are dependent upon private funds and medicaid to pay for their nursing home i mean i go up on the internet and i make sure at least that the places i'm looking at to put my family in on that they have above average ratings through medicare i i
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i think everybody should go and do an on site inspection when i look at these facilities i check and see are they new are they clean do they have a good ratio of staff to patient you know is there something that doesn't smell right doesn't feel right i don't think anything can beat an onsite inspection but you know the nursing homes in florida we are in a tough situation and my family is subjected to that just like all the families in florida you know they're run by shadow else sees that you know if we bring a claim against them there's no guarantee there's going to be insurance to pay the judgment and if we sue him by the time we win the case then up close enough shop starting up a new l.l.c. and there's no way to bring a claim against so horrified that i'm subjected to it so here it is for the best for myself and for everyone and so your advisors get out of florida van sell away frank you for joining me and we're going to talk more about this is this case
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develops coming up an investigation that is launched to uncover whether or not gold miners are members of the most in the amazon that's next. the mission of newsworthy is to go to the people tell their side of the story our stories are well sourced we don't hide anything from the public and i don't think the mainstream media in this country can say that any average viewer knows that r.t. america has a different perspective so that we're not hearing one echo chamber that mainstream media is constantly spewing. we're not beholden to any corporate sponsor no one tells us what to cover how long the coverage or how to say that's the beauty of
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archie america. we give both sides we hear from both sides and we question more that journalists are not getting anything get in your way to bring it home to the american people. most. of.
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your watching and our team america special report and they love this bugs you and me as much fun basically everything that you think you know about civil society have broken down. there's always going to be somebody else one step ahead of the game. we should not be dismissed of the normalising minds. we don't need people that think like this on our. this is an incredibly situation. members of remote from the amazon were murdered according to the brazilian agency on the digits affairs in an audio recording obtained by the agency gold miners bragged about the massacre at a bar near a colombian border saying it was a kill or be killed situation joining me to talk about this is our two correspondents among the roses reserve let me ask you this first of all what's the
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full story in this case and how is it developed so so far where do you see this well might brazilian authorities are investigating reports like you said of a massacre up to ten people they are from an isolated tribe in the amazon and this massacre was allegedly carried out by illegal gold miners in the area it's happened in the home value which is the second largest indigenous reserve in brazil and it allegedly took place in august now authorities only learned about it after these miners were caught bragging about it at a bar they spoke about cutting up these people's bodies throwing them in the river the men also had a handmade paddle and a small bag of these tribesmen used for carrying food and these gold miners claim they took it from their victims according to a government coordinator there's a lot of evidence here but this case still needs to be proven a prosecutor did confirm the investigation is going on but we're talking about a territory that is vast the access to it is extremely limited now because these
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tribes are un contacted you can't just swoop in and investigate bring all of your law enforcement authorities into this situation it's a very precarious situation it's going to require heavy involvement from brazil's agency on indigenous affairs to night and as they work together with law enforcement to figure out if they can come up with these bodies to prove this alleged massacre simone is this first of its kind or is this becoming a pattern that we're seeing them there. well according to the prosecutor in the region this is the second case that he's seen this year and before that he had never seen a case in this region before the first case that he saw happened in february of killing of un contact indigenous people but just because he hasn't investigated cases before doesn't mean it hasn't happened elsewhere in the country and in south america earlier this summer the un warns that indigenous people in brazil are specifically at risk he noted the country has seen the highest number of killings of environmental inland defenders of any country in the world over the past fifteen
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years they were averaging one murder a week and then you have your recent figures there are even more startling according to land pastoral commission because of land disputes more than fifty people have been killed this year from january through july that's compared with sixty one all of twenty sixteen that's indigenous groups rural workers and land activists that are being targeted here and usually it is from these illegal gold miners or longer as though in some cases police and the government are to blame for the violence. simone you've reported you've seen these cases firsthand reported on and basically these types of cases and love places around the globe all morning about this brazil's president michael tumours is getting a lot of heat for this incident why are they blaming his government one of the grounds for pointing the finger in his direction especially in this case you know again i would say you've probably seen similar situations in other other cases that you that you follow the room around the globe this is an interesting twist let's
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blame the government rather than the people who do you're cured of murder what's your take on this where people are starting to see a trend here and there and they're making these connections a lot of people are making the connection to tempers administration now the reason that could be is because nice funding the group that oversees this it's been slashed the agency on indigenous affairs now when i was forced to close five of nineteen bases that they used to monitor and protect these isolated tribes and then in the bases where they didn't have to close them they had to reduce the staffing now three of the closed bases of the five were in the have already value which is exactly where this alleged massacre took place and it's also home to twenty percent of the countries and contacted tribes to give you a picture of the slashed funding in two thousand and fourteen this group had a two point four million dollar budget now their budget is less than six hundred fifty thousand dollars and the director saying what do i do with six hundred fifty
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thousand dollars to take care of all of these isolated tribes on top of that aside from just slashing funding timer is taking cover because of a corruption scandal something that we've been covering a lot of in brazil and he's doing so with the help of the agricultural ranching and mining lobbies and he's using them to be able to push through economic reforms in brazil but to kind of pay them back he's been making policy changes that are really impacting deforestation and land rights happening in brazil he also tried opening up a large reserve in the amazon to mine. now the judge blocked that out but mining and logging here are really the biggest threats to indigenous communities right now and as the president is trying to allow them into this land the constitution protects this land for these tribes that have been here for longer than we can even imagine you know professors robert walker i think kim hill coauthored articles that promoted the need for controlled contact with these kinds of tribes remote tribes
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they believe to prevent incidents like what happened here what are their advocating and what is your take on what they're advocating small well mike according to walker and hill this no contact approach is not sustainable and actually they speculated that massacres like this alleged case would happen without a controlled peaceful contact in one paper the professor's coauthored twenty fifteen they wrote that by refusing authorized well planned contacts governments are simply guaranteeing that accidental and disastrous contacts will take place instead and then this month professor hill telling america's lawyer that unfortunately that speculation came true what they're advocating is that the governments initiate contact only after conceiving a very well organized plan i mean previously there's been poorly planned contacts that have had devastating effect especially for these tribes including death they need health care professionals and round the clock monitoring for more than
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a year after these people were to give contact so that's medical supplies and also food we're talking about really vulnerable populations they have no immunity to present day diseases and infections they have not been affected by this yet in the seventy's and eighty's there were a lot more contacts that was made with these tribes and that's when the population really suffered and the numbers of those populations were slashed so according to the professors there has to be an incredibly orchestrated effort but they believe that isolated populations are not viable in the long term. particularly as their lands continue to be encroached on as we're seeing happen now. you know simone you've got a great experience down in this part of the world what do you think happens is and i mean these tribal members who were massacred the worst kind of massacre in so we're saying this investigation is going to cure this how many times have you seen in third world kinds of countries where there's been any justice what is your personal take on whether there's going to be justice here from what i can tell you
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this prosecutor that now has two cases the ability for them to be able to solve it is going to be very hard that first case they've been working on since february and now we have a new case that goes back to august and it's taking miles and miles by boat even to get into these areas so it's a very challenging position and the opinions on what is best for these tribes really very the u.n. and brazil are on a no contact approach unlike what these professors are advocating for and it really depends on how you want to approach the situation but there's arguments for and against both the ability to get justice is going to be a little bit hard the fact that these miners were bragging about it might make it a little bit easier to track them down eventually but as long as you keep seeing the illegal activity happening in the amazon and as long as outsiders can keep coming in and using this land for their benefit and not paying respect to the people that live there and have their own way of life you're going to continue to see this happen and it's probably going to be increasing mike simone bill resign
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thank you for joining me thank you for being out there covering stories like this. in ohio juvenile detention centers being taken to court by four former inmates who say they were forced to participate in organized fights the lawsuit alleges of these brutal and bloody brawls were hosted by detention officers friday hodges and joshua zimmerman with complacency from others joining me to talk about this is executive editor of trial lawyer magazine fare and cousins one. the full story with this lawsuit for well basically what these guards at this juvenile detention facility were doing was every friday they had what they call a fight night they would get these juveniles in there force them to fight and some of the ones who refused to fight they would then pick the largest inmate there and make that person just go beat the heck out of whoever refused to actually come down
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into these fights and this was a huge you know only two people resigned as a result of this but there was complacency among the other guards there was complacency among the medical staff who would attend to these and make sure that nobody had visible bruises or injuries in fact they actually encourage them to hit each other in the bodies so that other guards who were not participating wouldn't be able to see the injuries so i take it that these two main guards are gone yeah i mean they are they resigned after the initial investigation rather than me and prosecuted hopefully they are going to be prosecuted but the rest of the story is it's impossible for the other guards and the other management people not to have known this is going on is that your take on this oh absolutely look i mean there are security cameras all over the place you know tons of people knew about this every inmate there knew about this we don't know yet to what extent they tried to warn anyone else or if they had you know spoken out about it but that's something we see a lot in juvenile detention facilities is that they do not speak out about the
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abuse they are children they don't know what rights they're entitled to in many cases not just this one but in others they get threatened with further retaliation if they come forward with any evidence of abuse from the guards that's why forty six states and washington d.c. investigations found systemic abuse at juvenile detention facilities almost all across the country every place to how long was this going on that's the first part of the question the second part what alternative really does an inmate a juvenile inmate have the big message. and there really are no in the alternatives for more than oh absolutely not they have absolutely no power no authority to say no and when they did say no again the guards would sic the larger inmates on them this was going on for years the guards in fact would refer to the good old days they called them when they could have fight nights and have the medical staff involved to get down there and kind of keep kids healthy enough to keep fighting the good old days that's what the guards called it hopefully somebody goes to jail
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on this one finally tonight some good news is the drug manufacturers ordered to release clinical research data for independent review to health care groups at yale law school want to two year freedom of information that case against drug company gilliard sciences the yale advocates were hoping that the drug company would join its peers and provide data voluntarily to a third party where they could provide a secure platform that won't compromise commercial interests or patient privacy mcgillion sizes flatly refused so they filed a case to obtain clinical data from the f.d.a. for testing involving the hep c. drugs saval the and hard and one of their objective is they say is to provide patients with greater certainty about the results claimed in the clinical trials that's all they're trying to find out are the clinical trials accurate and in the with the way things typically typically go with drug marketing from pharmaceutical
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companies independent scrutiny sounds pretty good these days especially. that's all for tonight be sure to check us out on our website at l. dot law where you can actually talk to an attorney about any of the stories we cover on the show and find us on facebook at facebook dot com slash r t america's lawyer also you can now watch r t america programs in this program on directv on channel three two one three two one on my passion tony and this is america's war where every week we tell you the stories the corporate media is ordered not to tell because their advertisers are paying them too much money have a great night. called
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the future with. every the world should you read it. and you'll get it on the you'll roll. according to jeff. i made a professional is powerpoint to show you how artsy america fits into the greater media landscape. all right we are a solid alternative to the. liberal or conservative and as you can see that is bar graph we don't skew the facts either talking at lefties talking at righties oh there you go above it all so look out world is in the spotlight now frankly i have no idea how to classify as and it actually took me way more time than i care to admit.

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